Synthesis of AgcoreAushell bimetallic nanoparticles for immunoassay based on surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy.J Phys Chem B. 2006 Mar 09; 110(9):4002-6.JP
Layered core-shell bimetallic silver-gold nanoparticles were prepared by coating Au layers over Ag seeds by a seed-growth method. The composition of Ag100-xAux particles can vary from x=0 to 30. TEM and SEM images clearly show that the bimetallic nanoparticles are of core-shell structure with some pinholes on the surface. Strong surface-enhanced Raman (SER) signals of thiophenol and p-aminothiophenol have been obtained with these colloids. It was found that the SERS activity of aggregated colloids critically depends on the molar ratio of Ag to Au. With the increase of the Au molar fraction, the SERS activity enhances first and then weakens, with the maximal intensity being 10 times stronger than that of Ag colloids. The AgcoreAushell nanoparticles were then labeled with monoclonal antibodies and SERS probes and used for immunoassay analysis. In the proposed system, antibodies immobilized on a solid substrate can interact with the corresponding antigens to form a composite substrate, which can capture reporter-labeled AgcoreAushell nanoparticles modified with the same antibodies. The immunoreaction between the antibodies and antigens was demonstrated by the detection of characteristic Raman bands of the probe molecules. AgcoreAushell bimetallic nanoparticles, as a new SERS active and biocompatible substrate, will be expected to improve the detection sensitivity of immunoassay.